Trusts vs. Wills … Everything You Need To Know

Do you need help figuring out the difference between a will and a trust?

A living will, also known as an advance directive, is a legal document that specifies your wishes regarding medical treatment if you become unable to communicate your decisions due to a terminal illness, injury, or other incapacitating condition. A living will typically goes into effect when you are in a “persistent vegetative state,” which means that you are unconscious and not able to make decisions for yourself.

In a living will, you can specify your preferences for medical treatment, such as whether you want to receive life-sustaining treatment (such as mechanical ventilation or tube feeding) or whether you want to be allowed to die naturally. You can also appoint a healthcare proxy, also known as a durable power of attorney for healthcare, to make medical decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.

It is important to note that a living will only applies to end-of-life medical treatment. It does not cover other aspects of your healthcare, such as routine medical care or treatment for non-terminal conditions.

A trust is a legal arrangement in which one person (the trustor) transfers ownership of property to another person (the trustee) to hold and manage for the benefit of a third person (the beneficiary). The trustor creates the trust by executing a trust agreement, which specifies the terms of the trust. The trust agreement may be written or oral.

There are many different types of trusts, including revocable trusts, irrevocable trusts, living trusts, and testamentary trusts. The type of trust that is right for you will depend on your goals and circumstances.

In a trust, the trustee has a legal obligation to manage the trust property in accordance with the terms of the trust agreement and for the benefit of the beneficiary. The trustee has a fiduciary duty to act in the best interests of the beneficiary. The beneficiary has the right to receive the benefits of the trust property, as specified in the trust agreement.

A living will is different from a last will and testament, which is a legal document that specifies how you want your assets to be distributed after you die.

Need more information? Reach out to Heban, Murphree & Lewandowski, LLC, a probate law firm in Toledo, Ohio, for immediate assistance! 419.662.3100

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